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John R. Parker

The Russia House Of Ideas: An Interview With Russian Comics Publisher Bubble

Denis Popov / Bubble
Denis Popov / Bubble

You can't talk about Russian comics without discussing Bubble. Since its inception in 2011, this little-engine-that-could has grown into the largest comic book publisher in Russia. Shepherded by CEO/publisher Artem Gabrelyanov and editor-in-chief Roman Kotkov, Bubble has a growing stable of titles, and an influence that is only beginning to reach across the Atlantic.

ComicsAlliance spoke with Gabrelyanov and Kotkov about censorship, propaganda, and Russia/US relations, and we even got around to talking about comics.

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Censoring America: Comics, Propaganda, And The Information War, Part II

Ed McGuiness / Marvel Comics
Ed McGuiness / Marvel Comics

It's been a long, hard road for comic books in Russia. Since the fall of the Soviet Union, attempts to build a comics community consistently met with economic hardship, and failed. It's only over the last several years that Western comic books have become a popular medium in Russia, and in that very short time, there have already been three highly publicized incidences of comics censorship.

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A Cult Of Violence: Comics, Propaganda, And The Information War, Part I

Protesters And Trump Supporters Gather In D.C. For Donald Trump Inauguration
Mario Tama / Getty Images

As Russia and America circle each other in this rapidly evolving Cold War 2.0, combat is waged in multiple theaters: cyber war, spy war, proxy war, cultural war, and an information war fueled by a persistent flow of disinformation and propaganda that hijacks narratives and distorts reality. In this series of articles, John Parker examines the common spaces in the strange Venn diagram where propaganda, culture wars, and information wars intersect with the world of comic books.

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Filed Under: Category: Longform, Opinion

Big Hearted, Black Hearted: Celebrating Warren Ellis

Tim Bradstreet / Vertigo
Tim Bradstreet / Vertigo

On February 16, 1968 in Essex, England, Warren Ellis materialized fully-formed, flicked a lit cigarette at the world, and went off to write brilliant comics, essays and stories that read like compressed and condensed versions of the man himself, full of all the prescience, bile, and heart that flows out of this creative giant.

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The Man Who Punched Hitler: Celebrating The Debut of Kirby & Simon’s Captain America

Captain America feat

Comics have always mirrored American culture back at the American reader, but no single character in comics seems to reflect back as much as Captain America. Created to fight the Nazis, and draped in the colors of the flag, the iconic figure carries an extra significance in his portrayal no matter what the political climate, and he has frequently been a source of controversy. Even in his debut, on December 20, 1940, Captain America was showing Americans something not everyone wanted to see.

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The Criminal Mind: A Birthday Tribute To Ed Brubaker

thefadeout_2

Born November 17, 1966, Ed Brubaker has worked on iconic characters such as Batman, Catwoman, Daredevil, and Captain America, typically resulting in long, fan-favorite and highly-acclaimed runs. His creator-owned works, particularly his many collaborations with artist Sean Phillips, are held in even higher regard, usually reaping in awards by the handful. Having lent his voice to a modern resurgence of crime, noir, and espionage stories, Ed Brubaker has always let his dark heart lead the way.

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The Understated Brilliance Of Steve Dillon

Preacher 066-027

When Steve Dillon passed away on October 22, 2016, comics lost one of its greatest masters of the invisible art. In a long and storied career, Dillon's work was characterized by concise layouts, subtle manipulations of time and space, and a remarkably expressive cartooning style that gave his comics an emotional resonance unlike any other. Let's take a moment to appreciate the gifts of a uniquely talented artist.

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A Tribute To Al Feldstein, The Great Collaborator

Shock cover 1

Born October 24, 1925, Al Feldstein was one of comics' great guiding lights. Although an exceptional artist, Feldstein's legacy comes from his work as a writer and editor at EC, where he was one of the primary driving forces behind two of the most influential movements in comics history.

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Harvey Kurtzman And The Search For Truth

mad-kurtzman-feat

Born October 3, 1924 in Brooklyn, New York, Harvey Kurtzman might be the single most influential cartoonist of all time.

As the editor of Two-Fisted Tales and Frontline Combat for EC Comics, Kurtzman created an entirely new kind of war comic that is still considered the gold standard today; as the creator and driving force behind Mad, he introduced his own brand of satire into the American lexicon. In an expansive family tree of truth-seekers that includes artists, writers, filmmakers, musicians, and comedians, Harvey Kurtzman is the root.

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Eerie: Celebrating The Bizarre & Beautiful Work Of Charles Burns

Charles Burns self portrait

Charles Burns excels at making people feel uncomfortable. Born September 27, 1955, Burns has been making incredible comics since his debut in the early 1980s. Simultaneously, he's cultivated a career as one of the most coveted and respected illustrators in the magazine industry. Today we celebrate one of the most unique voices in comics.

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